This objective of this study is to examine the linkages between real (economic) and financial variables in the
United States in a regime-switching environment that accounts explicitly for high volatility in the stock market
and high stress in financial markets. Since the linearity test shows that the linear model should be rejected, we
employ the Markov-switching VECM to examine the same objective using the Bayesian Markov-chain Monte
Carlo method. The regime-dependent impulse response function (RDIRF) highlights the increasing importance
of the financial sector of the economy during stress periods. The responses and their fluctuations are
significantly greater in the high-volatility regime than in the low-volatility regime.